The Kiplings and India: A Collection of Writings from British India, 1870-1900

Amour de Voyage (Rudyard Kipling)

And I was a man who could write you rhyme,
       (Just so much for you—nothing more),
And you were the woman I loved for a time,
       Loved for a little, and nothing more.

We shall go our ways when the voyage is o'er,
       You with your beauty and I with my rhymes,
With a dim remembrance rising at times
       (Only a memory, nothing more)
Of a lovely face and some worthless rhymes.

Meantime till our comedy reaches its end,
       (Its comic ending, and nothing more)
I shall live as your lover who loved as a friend—
       Shall swear true love till Life be o'er.
And you, you must make believe and attend,
       As the steamer throbs from shore to shore.

And so, we shall pass the time for a little,
       (Pass it in pleasure, and nothing more)
For vows, alas! are sadly brittle,
       And each may forget the oaths that we swore.
And have we not loved for an age, an age ?
And was I not yours from shore to shore ?

From landing-stage to landing-stage
       Did I not worship and kneel and adore?
And what is a month in love but an age ?
       And who in their senses would wish for more ?

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